My Approach to Helping
I believe in the power of people. I believe all people have within us the power to fuel great amounts of suffering, to secretly endure vast amounts of pain, and, thankfully, with the right conditions - to be able to heal ourselves and rediscover our unlimited potential. This is what I have learned through my own healing journeys, what I have seen in decades of work with various different people in NYC, and what I continue to see and be inspired by in each of the people and couples I work with now in psychotherapy. I am not a fan of the modern "medical model" of mental illness, which seems to come more and more from power dynamics in our current society and economy more than a deep understanding of the human condition and what it means to become one's true, best self in a complicated world.
Rather, I embrace the perspective that our "symptoms" and "disorders" are actually useful clues to how we are out of balance with our best selves, and they become useful signposts which light one's own personal path to healing. I believe there is much out of balance with our modern human society and that this has effects on all of us. I believe our species is social by nature - that relationships sustain us, heal us, and also can be where we feel pains most sharply. The very things which allow us to connect with others are also those which make us vulnerable to injury.
Most of us have been affected by our childhoods, times of dependence on others, etc. in ways which may have altered our own ability to even know our own true best self: how to find it, nurture it, support it, and have it thrive in balanced connections with the outside world. I have found the deeply personal process of psychotherapy to be the single most effective way to find, heal and care for our best selves.
More Info About My Practice
My own practice draws on many influences- from classical Psychoanalysis to Eastern philosophy and religion as well as modern brain science and research regarding the experience of trauma. I believe in the value of the therapeutic relationship to be a powerful healing tool for the human condition. I believe in the power of the unconscious to rule our decisions, choices, habits, etc. below the level of our own awareness and the natural growth and wholeness that occurs when we let ourselves bravely explore this. I believe it is only in the context of a safe, trusting relationship that real healing and growth can occur, as it is often in a relationship context, once we let ourselves see and/or remember this, that our own patterns of suffering were originally formed.
My Role as a Therapist
As my own mentor once posed to me in regards to this topic "If the doctor puts a cast on a broken leg for six weeks who heals the leg- the patient or the doctor?"
I have come a long way in my own personal healing and years of helping others to heal and grow, and I can now very comfortably say that I see my job as a psychotherapist as being, so to speak, this "cast." While I may also toy with terms like "process consultant" (my clear role when it comes to EFT Couples Therapy), or "guide along the personal pathway towards one own true and best self," I think that my being a "cast" best shows my view of the two roles in psychotherapy. I hold "the frame" so to speak, and use my knowledge of people, mental health, and the therapeutic process to set the conditions for change - which is always something one does (or chooses not to do) on one's own. I hold hope, curiosity, grounding in reality, and the role of continually maintain emotional "safety" in sessions - so that the other person may use these conditions to freely heal themselves through exploration of themselves: their wishes, goals, barriers, habits, experiences, ways of selectively experiencing the world, etc. You control the pace. You identify your problems and goal(s). Together we allow for natural healing and growth to take place.